Stephanie Geiser wanted to be unique and stand out among the best.
The Wadena-Deer Creek Wolverines gymnast showed off her peerless talent last week.
Geiser won the uneven parallel bars with a score of 7.3, floor exercise with a 7.75 and the all-around at 31.35. She led the Wolverines to a 114.74 to 86.95 victory over Pelican Rapids.
"In gymnastics you have to have one all-arounder," said W-DC coach Terry Olson. "She was our only all-arounder last year. If we didn't have her score we wouldn't be doing as well in any of the events. She does a nice job. She's our best gymnast, no doubt."
At the Pelican Rapids Invitational Dec. 13, Geiser won the all-around with a 31.5. She captured victories on balance beam (8.25) and floor (8.25). She finished third on the bars (8.25) and was third on vault (8.02).
"I was happy except for the bars," said Geiser. "I did the worst on that. It was the worst I have ever done. I thought the teams weren't as good as us so the team had a good chance of winning. I thought I would have a chance at winning some of the events.
"There was this one girl at the Pelican Rapids invite who I beat by less than a point. I knew I had to do everything perfect to beat her."
A member of the Wolverines' varsity since seventh grade, Geiser tried the sport while searching for a challenge. She also wanted to participate in something different than the rest of her class.
Now her goal is to have her name on every honor roll at W-DC. The only honor roll (a list of the top scores for each event in school history) the junior isn't on is vault. Once that goal is complete she hopes to move her name to the top of all those lists.
Because she's an all-arounder, Geiser can't concentrate on just one of the four events. She has to divide her practice time among the four disciplines in order to help her team.
"Basically, she doesn't have any down time during practice," said Olson. "She's got to be efficient in her workouts."
Geiser's beam routine has been efficient this season. Olson said that's her most consistent event and Geiser said it's her favorite discipline.
"There's more concentration involved," said Geiser. "It's easy to swing on the bars and do the floor, but it's hard to do the beam because it's four inches wide.
"This year I put in a new skill that I've never tried. I stuck my whole routine and never fell off at the invitational. I've never landed that skill before."
Geiser incorporates power into her routines. Olson believes that's her greatest asset.
"Even on the beam she uses a lot of power," he said. "Her tumbling is powerful. Her jumps and leaps are powerful. Power is her strength."
Other notable performances:
Basketball -- Mel Waytashek, Pierz, had 18 points and six steals against Albany.
Kim Rosecrans, Crosby-Ironton, scored 18 points against Hermantown and 16 against Detroit Lakes.
Emily Stumpf, Pierz, had 17 points, eight rebounds, four assists and three steals against Royalton.
Michelle Nieman, Little Falls, had 17 points against Brainerd.
Lindsey Green, Lake Region, scored 17 points against Chisago Baptist.
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